1A high school basketball: Bryce Valley wins a double overtime thriller for community, coach and Big Red
In the first quarter alone there were five 3-point shots. Bryce Valley led by two-points at half, but the Eagles had already begun to do what they've done all tournament and that is rely on their defense to claw their way back into games.
Kaden Moon led the Eagles with 15 points, including two critical 3-point shots. Braxton Spencer added 10 points, while McKade Nielsen came back from an elbow to the face to score 11 points and earn 11 rebounds. Trent Roberts scored 13 points in the thriller.
On the Mustangs' side, it was 1A tournament MVP Braxton Syrett who led the way with 23 points and 10 rebounds. But it was center Logan LeFevre who sent the game into its second overtime when Syrett's shot bounced off the rim and he grabbed it and sent it back up as time expired.
"I knew my time would come when I could prove myself," said LeFevre, who'd struggled to score in the game, finishing with 9 points. "When the rebound came to me, it was just kind of natural to turn and look for the basket, and I just tried to do my best to make that shot. ... It was like we had a second chance."
In the second overtime, the Mustangs led by one point until, with less than a minute remaining, freshman Kix Roundy hit a 3-point shot and then hustled down the court to grab the rebound from a Duchesne miss.
"I was behind him saying, 'No, No, Yes!’ ” said Jessen with a grin.
Roundy was, as he always is, matter-of-fact about hitting the critical shot.
"I saw an opening and I guess it went in," he said. "It was crazy. It was fun, though."
And though he never showed it, he said he felt a lot of pressure.
All of the boys did. They wanted to win for themselves, but more so for the coach who'd worked so hard right along side them. They wanted to win for the town that fills the arenas wherever they play.
And they wanted to win for the 6-foot-8 redheaded teammate whose determination they can still feel when they think about their time with him.
Syrett said, "6-8 you can't replace," as he draped his arm around Mecham. "He's the biggest cheerleader you've ever seen. We just wanted Jesse here, and we wanted coach to know that it doesn't matter what anybody says, 'Your son is here with us.' And we wanted to dedicate this one to him."
MVP: Braxton Syrett, Bryce Valley Kix Roundy, Bryce Valley Hunter Mecham, Bryce Valley Josiah Brannon, Bryce Valley Kaden Moon, Duchesne Josh Hanberg, Duchesne McKade Nielsen, Duchene Skyler Argyle, Rich Jake Duncan, Monticello Tyce Barney, Panguitch Colby Spencer, Valley Duce Namazi, Layton Christian